One of the growing youth sports organizations in the area will hold its Fourth Annual Cape Fear Clash Lacrosse Tournament at Veterans Park in Monkey Junction on June 11-12. Games will be held from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. during each day of the event.
With a total of 28 teams from around the region scheduled to compete each day among various age groups, Cape Fear Clash has become one of the highlights during a busy summer schedule for the Cape Fear Shamrocks youth program, which runs under the umbrella of the Cape Fear Lacrosse Association (CFLA).
Two Shamrocks travel teams are registered to play in each age bracket, consisting of U11, U13, U15, and two high school teams.
“Participants in the Cape Fear Clash tournament come from around the southeastern region,” said Adam Ericson, President of the CFLA Board of Directors. “We will see teams from Charlotte, Raleigh, Charleston, Myrtle Beach and Virginia this weekend.”
Founded in 2008, CFLA has grown tremendously over the past eight years. The association has between 600 and 800 youth players in the program, offering spring, summer and fall sessions. Cape Fear Shamrocks are male age-based travel teams, with approximately 190 players on eight different teams.
“Shamrocks elite players come from most area high schools, including Laney, New Hanover, Hoggard, Ashley, Cape Fear Academy, as well as a few from outside the county,” Ericson said. “We currently have four players on our high school elite team committed to Division I schools. Last year, we had six players move on to Division III programs.”
As the lacrosse community continues to expand throughout the Wilmington area, CFLA is been at the forefront of developing young players into quality high school standouts, providing them with the skillsets needed to earn opportunities at the next level.
CFLA offers younger kids an introduction to the sport in a fun environment, with a focus on developing fundamental skills, while fostering age-appropriate competition. Travel teams further enhance fundamentals of the game for more advanced players, with increased opportunity to compete against higher skilled teams.
For high school athletes, Cape Fear Shamrocks give athletes a chance to compete in tournaments with some of the best players on the east coast and showcase their talents in front of college coaches, which can help them get a shot at the next level.
“The organization also gives players valuable game experience with an additional 20-25 games per season,” Ericson said. “We have seen a great improvement in the skill level of local high school teams as many of the players are benefiting from their experience in the Shamrocks organization.”